FAQ

Is "Pearls4Girls" (P4G) a charitable organization?

No – P4G is a social enterprise of 'Help Lesotho'. Help Lesotho is a registered and incorporated charitable organization (#82246 8476 RR0001) with an Executive Director and a Board of Directors. All proceeds raised through the sale of Pearls4Girls jewellery go directly to Help Lesotho. Help Lesotho is responsible for proper accountability and transparency of the Pearls4Girls financial information; the figures are audited by an external firm annually.

Where do the pearls come from?

The pearls are freshwater cultured pearls from the pearl producing regions of China.  Mary Murphy, the founder of the Pearls4Girls program, used to regularly visit China on business. While in Beijing, she became friends with a pearl vendor named Ken, who owns a small shop with his wife in the well-known Hongqiao Market. Ken has been making our jewellery (with the exception of the Signature Bracelets) since 2007.

We love Ken! He is well recommended by people from the Embassies in Beijing and the airline pilots and attendants who often come to his shop for pearls.  Ken’s jewellery has been independently assessed by jewellers in Canada, and found to be of excellent quality.

How can I get involved with Pearls4Girls?

There are many ways to get involved with Pearls4Girls!

  • Shop online and promote the program to your friends and networks. Buy pearls for yourself, or give them as gifts;
  • Donate to Pearls4Girls or to a specific project – like Sanitary Kits so girls can stay in school (Canadian donors are eligible for tax receipts through Help Lesotho);
  • Wear Pearls4Girls for your wedding jewellery or outfit your bridesmaids with meaning bracelets/earrings/necklaces;
  • Organize a Pearl Bee to make Signature Bracelets; or
  • Host a Pearl Party at your home or business!

What kind of pearls are they?

95% of the pearls used in Pearls4Girls jewellery are freshwater cultured pearls. YES, THEY ARE REAL PEARLS! The other 5% are shell pearls, which are man-made with crushed mother-of-pearl.

We use a variety of pearl styles, including classic round pearls, rice pearls, baroque pearls, and keshi pearls. Pearls naturally grow in white and a variety of pastel colours. These colours can be intensified through gamma-ray irradiation, and pearls can be dyed for more intense colours (pearls are porous and easily absorb natural extracts and dyes).

How much of my purchase supports the leadership programs for girls in Lesotho?

A whopping minimum of 50% of the purchase price of all Pearls4Girls jewellery directly supports leadership programs in Lesotho. For some pieces, the percentage increases to over 75%.

As a social enterprise, Pearls4Girls is not making a profit. All funds raised through the sale of the jewellery cover the cost of goods, minimal program operating costs (website hosting, display items, administration, etc.), and everything that is left (which is a minimum of 50% of the purchase price) is used for programming in Lesotho.

Do you do custom orders?

Yes, custom orders are possible. We have worked with many women to design custom bridal jewellery for both brides and bridesmaids. Custom orders are available to anyone spending a minimum of $250. Note that up to six months may be required for custom jewellery to be available. Please contact pearl@pearls4girls.org to chat about your ideas.

What is the return/exchange policy?

Signature Bracelets (on elastic cord) can be exchanged at any time for a replacement bracelet. Please return your broken (or nearly broken) bracelet to us either by mail or in person.

All other jewellery is eligible for an exchange within three months of your purchase. The original piece must be returned before a replacement will be issued. Please contact pearl@pearls4girls.org if you need to make a return.

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